House Republicans Step Up For America’s Police

Photo by Scott Rodgerson on Unsplash

On Wednesday (April 19), the House of Representatives voted to block the Washington Police Accountability Act from taking effect.

Wednesday’s vote marks this year’s latest occurrence that the lower chamber has decided to cancel legislation in the nation’s capital.

The House passed the disapproval resolution in a vote of 229-189.

Fourteen Democrats voted with Republicans to pass the resolution.

These included Democrat Reps. Angie Craig (Munn.), Dom Davis (N.C.), Nikki Budzinski (Ill.), Henry Cuellar (Texas), Josh Gottheimer (N.J.), Jared Golden (Maine), Susie Lee (Nevada), Jimmy Panetta (CA.), Wiley Nickel (N.C.), Chris Pappas (N.H.), Marie Gluesenkamp Perez (Wash.), Kim Schrier (Wash.), Pat Ryan (N.Y.), and Eric Sorensen (Ill.).

The resolution will be heading to the Senate, where the bill’s prospects are still unknown.

But even if the upper chamber passes the resolution, sending it to the White House, the Biden administration has revealed the President intends to veto the resolution.

Wednesday’s vote comes weeks after Congress successfully blocked D.C. from enacting its revised criminal law, exciting Republicans and dividing Democrats – some of whom were disappointed with how the process was handled.

The disapproval resolution is part of a GOP strategy to draw attention to crime in the United States, which has galvanized voters in the 2022 midterm elections.

The votes force Democrats to share their views on crime on record, prompting some moderate Democrats to vote against their party and allowing GOP lawmakers to label those who oppose the effort as soft on crime.

Wednesday’s legislation aimed at the Police Accountability Act, known as the Comprehensive Policing and Justice Reform Act, which passed the D.C. Council in December.

The bill has not yet come into effect.

The measure would make permanent some of the reforms the city temporarily implemented after the killing of George Floyd in 2020.

For example, it limits police searches to first receiving consent in lieu of a warrant for police searches, limits the use of non-lethal weapons when trying to quell riots, adds civilians to disciplinary boards, and strengthens the requirement that body camera videos of police-involved shootings be released.